• Daventry team chases more success in Britain’s FIA Formula 4 series.
  • Hedley leads Drivers’ standings, Fortec ahead in Teams Cup.
  • 2-mile Indy circuit – scene of last year’s title decider – set to produce another action-packed weekend live on ITV3.

Fortec Motorsport is targeting a return to the winner’s circle in FIA British Formula 4 as the series returns to action at Brands Hatch, Kent this weekend (26-27 June).

The Daventry-based team arrive at the 1.2-mile Indy circuit with the upper hand in both the Drivers’ and Teams’ Championships after another solid weekend at Snetterton a fortnight ago.

Four podiums from the opening six rounds – including another last time out at Snetterton – have helped James Hedley open up an early 25-point lead over nearest rival Matthew Rees in the championship.

Joel Granfors sits fourth in the standings, a little further back after contact hampered his weekend in Norfolk, with Ollie Gray eighth outright and just five points shy of the lead in the Rookie Cup.

In the Teams Cup it’s more good news for Fortec, with a 27-point margin back to second-placed JHR heading to Kent, and to a circuit which holds fond memories in recent times for the team.

Luke Browning sealed the team’s inaugural title in the category at the same venue last November, triumphing in the torrentially wet conditions by a slender 4-point margin to spark dramatic scenes on the final day of the season.

The team have also won races with the likes of Johnathan Hoggard and Jamie Caroline in the past, with the aim to repeat that success this weekend.

Following two practice sessions on Friday is that all-important qualifying at 10:55 on Saturday, ahead of the opening race at 15:50.

Sunday features another double-header of action, starting with Race 2 at 10:00 and ending with the ITV3-televised final race at 13:50.

Oliver Dutton, F4 Team Manager said:

“Brands Hatch is definitely a circuit we regard fondly, for obvious reasons, so it’s always a pleasure to be heading back there, particularly with the British F4 team.

“It’s been a good hunting ground for us in the past, and despite a few blips at Snetterton last time out, I think all three drivers are feeling really confident and raring to get going.

“We’ve got the lead in both championships to protect, and Ollie is very much within striking distance of taking the upper hand in the Rookie Cup, so there’s plenty to play for.”

Joel Granfors (#5) said:

“Qualifying will be crucial this weekend, and I’d say it’s probably the most important qualifying session of the year. It’s a small, short track with no real straights, so overtaking is very difficult. It takes a mistake from the driver in front to get ahead, so starting high up the order will be key.

“Qualifying hasn’t been our strong point so far this year, so that’s an area we need to improve, but we’ve got a couple of ideas to try out that will hopefully change that. For me personally, I will approach the first part of the weekend a bit differently, too, being slightly more on the attack in the early sessions to get more quickly up to speed. We think and hope that we are on the right path and I’m very excited to head back out on track on Friday.”

Oliver Gray (#63) said:

“It’s been a bit frustrating recently, the results definitely haven’t matched our potential, so I’m really pleased to have another opportunity so soon after Snetterton to get back in the car and start clawing back the gap.

“Brands Hatch is a really fun circuit to drive, it’s short and changes gradient so often, it feels a bit like a rollercoaster to drive.

“The team have a good track record around here, and I’m feeling confident in myself. A few things haven’t gone our way recently, but when it all comes together, we’ll be right up at the front.”

James Hedley (#67) said:

“I’m looking forward to Brands Hatch, it should be another good weekend. Fortec’s cars have always run well around there, so hopefully a strong qualifying session will lead to a good weekend.

“If we just keep doing what we’re doing and extend the championship lead, it should be good.”